Thursday, June 30, 2011

End of The Voice

The Voice ended last night and I have to say I could have skipped the whole show after the first show. I had the winner pegged immediately. I'm glad Javier won; he is very good.

I'm also pleased to see how the coaches acted with their contestants. If I was on the show, I would want Blake. He is so nice and caring. You could tell that he will be friends with Dia their whole lives. Of course, that may be because he has that Oklahoma hominess that I'm used to.

My husband said that if he was going to buy an album, it would be Dia's. Although he did say that Javier was the best voice. So I'm glad that the two of them were the top.

I can live without hearing Beverly WOOOOO her way through a song. Whitney wondered if she had severe headaches from the way she threw her head around.

Most entertaining song this week was the duet between Vici and Cee-Lo. From that performance, Whitney wants to see Cee-Lo in concert because it would be a spectacular show. I might have to go along with that.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Signing Bonus

I was asked today if we can do "signing bonuses" for new hires. Really? We aren't a professional sports team. We are a university. Where people are usually happy just to have a job. I know that they are really trying to hire this person, but I can tell already that he is going to be a PAIN. No I don't know what his net pay will be. No you can't offer more than anyone else is making with the same level of degree. If this guy is so good, does he have any other job offers? I didn't think so. He should be greatful to get a job working at this place which does look good on anyone's resume.

Monday, June 27, 2011

While the Cat is Away...

The mice will play. At least that's how the saying goes. My boss this week is in Ethiopia teaching a class. Our associate director had to go out of town unexpectedly for the week. So that leaves me in charge. This usually happens a couple of times a year. The first is always the big meteorology conference and half of our building empties out. So being in charge is never a problem that week. There is another conference during the year they go to but it is only for a couple of days, not a week. But if I'm left in charge at other times, it never fails that something MAJOR goes wrong.

One year I had to deal with an employee who hadn't paid state taxes in three years and was about to be terminated if the situation wasn't rectified immediately. One year I had to deal with a hostile work situation. This year I already know what the problem is going to be this week and warned my boss before he left. I'm prepared to handle it because I have past experience to go by.

But still I wonder what else will go wrong. I will pull on the supervisor hat (which I totally dislike) and make decisions. I once had a boss who said to not to worry about things because we aren't dealing with life and death. Take a deep breath. He had been a Colonel on an Air Force carrier so he knew a little about life/death situations. I try and remember his advice when it seems like the world is collapsing. Because it isn't. Everything can be fixed somehow. It may not be the ideal answer, but it can be fixed.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

It's HOT!!!!!

It's 101 as I type this. Oklahoma is about to set a record tomorrow for most days over a 100 in a month. Tomorrow is supposed to be 105 with a heat index of 115. I have no idea when it will be in the 90's again. Isn't that sad that you hope for 99 degrees?

Thank goodness for air conditioning. Thank goodness for a work office where I am so cold I actually wear a sweater. Thank goodness that Whitney's work doesn't go swimming when the heat index is to high so I don't have to worry about her getting sunstroke. Thank goodness for air conditioning (yes I said it a second time I mean it soooo much).

Those 98/99 degrees are just there to tease us. It will never be that cool.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Mistaken Identity

We have three bird feeders in our yard. One has safflower seeds, one has sunflower seeds and one is a hummingbird feeder. I love to watch the birds in the morning and evening fighting for their place at the feeder. Some of them are smarter than others and gather all the seeds from the ground. Mostly it is finches, cardinals and sparrows. I do have one large bird that looks like a pigeon but Dan thinks it is a dove that hangs out on the ground by the safflower seeds.

Yesterday though we had the strangest siting ever. The hummingbird feeder is right by the living room window. We had a hummingbird that caught my eye and then just a couple of minutes later, another bird went to it. But it wasn't a was an ORIOLE. I didn't even think we had those kind of birds in Oklahoma. I kept looking at it going why is there an oriole here? It was orange in all the right places. We even got the bird book out and found its picture. And it was at the HUMMINGBIRD feeder! Drinking from it. For five minutes. I couldn't believe it. Obviously this bird did not know what he was supposed to be doing.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Would You Like a Side Order of Heart Attack With That?

State fair season is upon the country and so brings a new round of "What Can I Fry". Last year the Texas State Fair introduced us to fried butter (basically a donut with a wad of butter inside) and fried Coca-Cola. This year, the San Diego County Fair has fried Koolaid. That doesn't sound appetizing to me. It is dough with powder koolaid mixed in. There also is fried spaghetti/meatballs at the Minnesota State Fair. Texas has fried beer, peanut butter and lattes.

I hope that these places have automatic defibulators standing on the ready for the cardiac arrests that amount of friedom must have.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

This Week in Review (And yes I know it is Thursday)

I figured I would get my reality tv review in early eventhough the So You Think You Can Dance results show is tonight.

The Voice

Well we all know who is going to win this one. It was pretty obvious from day 1 that Javier had it in the bag. And yes he is that good. For the semi-finals, I think Cee-Lo had the strongest team. Either of his members would be good in the finals. I personally find Beverly's WOOOOO in every song annoying. The judges all wimped out except for Adam awarding equal points to each of their singers and leaving it up to America. Hey, isn't that what next week is for. Thank you Adam for making a statement and actually doing your job.

They are holding auditions for season 2. I will not be auditioning since I cannot sing. A blind audition would not help me at all.

So You Think You Can Dance

Week two brings us all 20 dancers again in the same partnerships as last week. And another guest judge, Debbie Reynolds. I understand she was a dancer a long time ago, but please bring back rotating GOOD judges who can actually comment on the dancers constructively. I really didn't need a Woody Woodpecker impression or telling the dancers that I want to take you home with me. Really, I can do a better job than that. There were not any real standout dances last night. And finally we showed the first cracking of a dancer in a different genre. Four dancers go home tonight. Last week I was so wrong about the bottom 3. I didn't like Sasha/Alexander. I think Clarice/Jess didn't do well. Wadi was terrible at the cha-cha although his partner did very well at it. Of course, I don't really like his partner so she could go home. I thought Tadd did an awesome job at the Viennese Waltz (I'm sure he has taken classes other than his freestyle B-Boy stuff). Also Miranda/Robert did a really good hip hop number. They were in the bottom last week, maybe because of his Wooing. He didn't do that this week so hopefully that will keep them out of the bottom. Iveta/Nick weren't that great but I find it hard to believe that the judges would send the only ballroom/tap dancers home. So if they are in the bottom, sorry for the other couples, you are gone.

So we can see how my predictions do tonight.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Laptop for College

For Whitney's graduation, we said we would buy her a laptop. Rather than pick one out, we were going to let her choose up to an amount that I knew we could buy a really good one. Well she decided she wanted a Macbook. Since that was more than we wanted to spend, she had to use some of her graduation money to pay the difference. After much discussion, she decided on a Macbook Pro. They were clearancing an older model at my university, so she got a good deal on it. Yesterday it came and she immediately was giddy with excitement. We figured out how to turn it on (I have to say that we are a total PC family so Macs are foreign to us). We also figured out how to connect to our wireless network. I still need to install software and figure out how to move all her music/photos/documents from her old computer.

Her quote last night was "I don't know how to use this thing." I figure she has two months to figure it all out. I will be of no use to her on that one.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

OCU - I LOVE This School

Last Monday, Whitney and I went to OCU to get her registered for classes and have Stars 101, their version of orientation. I cannot tell you how pleased I am with this school. They take their motto of you are a name not a number seriously. The best advice was during parenting 101. We were told that the school's job was to get the kids off our payroll. That got a good laugh. But then they said that within the first six weeks, the student needs to bond with someone/something at their new school to be successful. So don't keep having your kid come home during that time. Let them stay there so they can bond. They have so many activities during that time, that there has to be something for the student to connect to. We were also told that we are only going to hear how miserable things are from our student and never the good stuff. But remember that they will be having lots of good stuff. Having been away from home to go to college, I can relate to that. I think all I ever told my parents was the bad stuff.

They had an activities far going on so the kids could see different kinds of things offered. I was impressed with the church activities. OCU is affiliated with the Methodist religion but is open to all. They have a Christian women's sorority that looks good. Whitney is going to go through rush, the school only has three sororities and it doesn't seem as cut-throat as some university rushes. We talked to the Study Abroad person and they have several choices.

The only problem seems to be Whitney's schedule. We are waiting on AP test scores to come in so she knows if she gets college credit for anything. The important one is the Calculus score. If she can score high enough, she can skip College Algebra (which I know is two steps back in her math education) and start taking business courses. If she doesn't score high enough, we are considering taking the CLEP test for algebra. I would think that after having Calculus in high school, algebra would be easy. And certainly after taking the ACT/SAT as many times as she did. Her English score would affect the Comp 2 class, so we can wait on that. And Spanish would just add hours. She doesn't have to take a foreign language because she had five years in high school (8th grade counts here if it is a full year). She would consider a minor if she could place out of the first two classes. She also is enrolled in the World Religion course that all students take plus Public Speaking, another requirement. I like that all students have to take public speaking; I think it will help all of them in the future.

We toured the dorms and they look different with no one living in them. The newest one of course looks the best. But it is extremely hard for freshman to get into it.She'll know mid-July which dorm she will be in and who her roommate will be. Then she can buy her bedding since the rooms have different size beds.

I feel very comfortable sending her to OCU. I'm so glad that she worked hard and got scholarships so we can afford to send her there.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Le Tour De Vin Review

A week ago I spent the evening with 200+ wines. Well I really didn't spend my evening with that many, but we did have that many choices. I'm used to wine tastings with 6-8 different wines. I felt overwhelmed. I had prepared myself looking at the list before hand so I could come up with a game plan. Since I had spent $100 for a ticket, I wanted to make sure and get my money's worth and taste the more expensive wines first. I concentrated on whites. It is much easier for me to find a white that I like. Reds are much trickier. Here are the wines that impressed me. I can't tell you more than the names because I didn't make any other notes. I don't even know how much anything costs.

Kendall Jackson Avant Chardonnay - I do remember that this is an unoaked chardonnay

Santa Christina Pinot Grigio

Masi Mesianco

David Arthur Meritaggio - ok the one red that I tried. The wine maker was there which made it interesting to talk to him about his wines.

Benessere Pinot Grigio

Amici Sauvignon Blanc

Joseph Phelps Eisrebe - this is a dessert wine but not too sweet

Eroica Riesling

Elk Cove Pinot Gris

Tattinger La Francaise - some bubbly to end the evening

I'm glad I went but I doubt I would go again. There was too many wines (yes there is such a thing) and the food was not enough for drinking. They ran out and being hungry isn't a good idea.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Five Question Friday

Oooh, it is a double post day for me. Aren't you the lucky ones?!

1. What is your favorite summer time activity?

Staying cool in the air conditioning. Heat and Tracy do not mix. Sun and Tracy do not mix. So therefore the air conditioning is the only thing I want in the summer.

2. Do you have one laundry soap you stick to, or do you buy whatever's on sale?

I have been using Purex Free since Walmart stopped selling Cheer Free. I don't want my laundry smelling like anything. I also use Bounce Free dryer sheets.
3. What is your favorite dinner to make in the summer?

Pesto is the absolutely best to make in the summer. We grow basil so it is really fresh. Put it on pasta, yummy. Put it on pizza, yummy. In fact Whitney's friends love to come over in the summer to have our pesto pizza.

4. Do you have any talents?

I have a talent for numbers and spreadsheets. I like to sit in my office and work on them all day.
5. If you could instantly be an expert in something, what would it be? Why?

What an interesting question. I would like to be an expert in dancing. I've always enjoyed watching it. I want to enjoy doing it.

Reality TV - The Week in Review

OK I'm a reality tv junkie. I admit I have a problem. I am selective, but when I decide to watch something, I watch it from beginning to end.

The Voice

We had to watch this one online because of the storm Tuesday night. I admit the best part of a DVR is skipping commercials. We had the same stupid Latisse commercial 10 times online. OK for the show they announced the two "saves" for teams Blake and Christina. Christina did not suprise me at all. Blake...WHAT WERE YOU THINKING!?! The viewer one was fine, but Blake chose Xenia, who shouldn't have even made it to that round. Maybe he thinks this is "The Voice Who I Can Mold and Needs Me the Most". Terrible choice and there is no way anyone from his team will win.

We had performances from Teams Cee-Lo and Adam. Cee-Lo decided that his singers really needed some backup talent/fire twirlers/dancers. Very distracting there. Maybe that was to mask the bad song choices. Hopefully Cee-Lo won't make the same mistake Blake did and pick the sister group. Yikes.I'm sure the viewers will pick Nakia, who is pretty awesome.  Adam had a much better team to start with. He may have a tough decision ahead. It was unfortunate that Javier sang that song that plays during the dog/cat commercial about animal shelters. We couldn't even watch it it is so depressing.

Not sure what next week brings but I saw that there is two shows.

Top Chef Masters

It was the season finale of this show. Three very talented accomplished chefs cooking the best meal of their lives. Sometimes this seems like odd choices. The first season where Rick Bayless won has to be the best cohesive meal I think. Floyd won, a very nice man. Of course I was hoping Mary Sue would win because her food seems the most approachable to me. Plus I remember watching her on Two Hot Tamales years ago.

So You Think You Can Dance

Thank goodness that the best "talent" show is back on the air. I so love watching good dancing. And boy the talent just keeps getting better each year. The performers really got to stick with their normal genre except for a few. I think that helped because people could see how good they really are, instead of having to do something so outside what they normally do and screwing up. I was really wrong about who America would vote into the bottom three. None of the ones that I thought deserved to be there were in the bottom. And then they had these breathtaking solos to stay on the show. How could anyone choose to send someone home? The judges even had two of the boys do it again so they could pick.

And then the biggest cop out of the year when they decided not to send anyone home. Two couples will go home next week. Personally I think that they didn't want to send any of those dancers home because they didn't like how America voted. I think that there were weaker dancers safe and they wanted to give America another chance to get it right. I hope that next week they make people go outside their comfort zone and then we'll be able to see how they do.

The group dance was pretty awesome I have to say too.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Microburst - What a Storm!

Tuesday night we had a microburst. That is a storm that whips up 60+mph winds, lots of rain and hail. I was at a restaurant with a friend and we kept checking the weather on his Iphone. We were sitting next to windows and kept looking at the clouds. All of a sudden things started banging and wooshing. The front door was opening/closing so the staff locked it. And it monsoon rained. Whitney called from home (thank goodness she had made it there from the mall) and said it was a monsoon and hail there. The neighbor's tree in the back had split. The power was flickering. At the restaurant we got quarter sized hail.

Do not do this
And the roads flooded really bad. Tree limbs across the street came down and luckily missed a car. I knew I wasn't going anywhere for awhile so we ordered dessert. What else could we do? When we finally decided the road had gone down enough to drive through, I went home. We only missed really bad damage by a couple of blocks. I passed several large trees down.

Downtown building

There was a great deal of hail/wind damage downtown.

And about 1 1/2 mile from my house there were downed power lines. An apartment complex had its roof ripped off. We did lose a big branch on our front tree but we had power all night. About 1/3 of the town was without it. We didn't have cable or internet until lunch on Wednesday so we really didn't know what had happened other places.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Good shopping day

I took Whitney shopping this morning and we found the deals. I had $10 Kohl's cash to spend and a discount card. We ended up getting two patriotic tshirts for free! (I love free by the way). Then we hit Dillard's and they had intimate apparel on clearance so we each got stuff. Major clearance (I love clearance too). Best of all I spent quality time with my girl.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Girls Weekend

So it is just Whitney and I this weekend; Dan is out communing with nature. So what are the big plans? Tonight we made pesto pizza and brownies. We had leftover pesto from earlier in the week, I bought a pizza crust and there you go. Wasn't as good as Dan's pizza, but it certainly was tasty. The brownies are low-fat and taste just like a good chewy brownie. I colored my hair and Whitney went to bed really early. Guess all those days of double shifts at work caught up to her.

Saturday should bring us shopping (of course Whitney's favorite activity). I have a huge wine tasting event to go to. It's a big fundraiser so I spent a lot more money than I ever would. But I decided to splurge and treat myself to something just for me. They will have nine restaurants and 200+ wines to try. I have the list in advance so I could do a little scouting since that is just way too many to drink. Yikes, don't want to drink too much. That wouldn't make a good impression.

Sunday is church and cleaning the house. Maybe we'll go see the Parade of Homes Showhome and get some decorating ideas.

Monday is the big day. We go to OCU to register for classes. It is a whole day of talks, meetings and lunch. I'm excited and I know Whitney can't wait. There are quite a few people from her online boards going so she is hoping to meet some new people that she has chatted with.

I'll be sure to write about the wine tasting and registration days. Hope everyone has a good weekend and don't get too hot.

I Can't Post Comments

For some stupid reason I can't get my google account to log in and post comments on anyone's blogs. And I want to. I need to give words of encouragement to Sarah (please know I am thinking of you). I love the Brazil pictures over at GB. There was a delicious snickerdoodle cake on a blog. And I am always humored over at Pampers/Pinot. So for a week I have not been able to comment. Everything is bottled up inside. People probably think I don't care. And I do care. I just can't figure out a way to show it.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Dance Recital

Saturday was Whitney's last dance recital. After 14 years I'm pretty much a pro at this. She was in all four shows so I spent the day and night at the theater. Thank goodness it has comfortable seats, although about halfway through show 3 my back was hurting.

Whitney is second from the right
Before show 4 they had senior recognition. Eight lovely young ladies who probably have almost 100 years of dance with Modern Dance Arts. I know the girls starting to get a little emotional knowing it was their last time together. One of the girls has been in almost every single class that Whitney has been in. That's a lot of classes together.
She did wear the dress we dyed last weekend. It turned out lovely.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Voice - Review After the Battle Rounds

Well I had great promise for this show after the first week. Unfortunately the battle rounds did not live up to my expectations. I didn't like the whole put two people to sing the same song as a duet. I could see each person singing the same song after each other. That way they could be in their key and not try and sing something that was wrong for them.

Here are my picks for teams:

Team Adam before cuts
 1. Adam has the best team hands down. I think he was the most thoughtful in picking people to start. He also has three of the best male voices on the show. I'm not sure how the rest of the show is going to work with live performances but I think someone from Adam's team will win.

Team Blake before cuts
2. Blake has a couple of good singers and a couple of duds. Last night the two girls signing had no business being on the stage. He does have a good country male singer but that's about it.

Team Cee-Lo before cuts
3. Cee-Lo is third. The guy with the wild hair is good and the first girl that was picked is good too. Not sure if they are winners though. And he picked that sister group that isn't even worthy of bubblegum songs. Geez.

Team Christina before cuts
4. Christina has the worst group ever. Last night she clearing picked the less talented person only because she wailed notes like Christina does. She seemed to really like people who wail like her. Not good. She also seemed to like bald women. Maybe she needed to feel like no one could compete with her beauty.

So I will wait to see how things come out next week.